1st Edition

Trust, Impact, and Fundraising for Nonprofits How meaningful ethics and strategic evaluation can multiply your revenue and expand your program

By Kenneth Phillips Copyright 2023
    272 Pages 103 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    272 Pages 103 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Distilling decades of leadership expertise into an effective framework, this is a practical guidebook for nonprofits around the globe, with practical recommendations for the urgently needed steps to make this a better world. Charities in the United States and NGOs globally need to overcome two glaring and persistent weaknesses in the eyes of potential donors: trustworthiness and effectiveness. After examining possible causes for these deficits, fundraising and organizational development guru Ken Phillips guides readers through the process that leads to greater trust and respect by donors, better results for beneficiaries, significantly increased funding, and better and bigger programs. Alongside helpful worksheets, he presents seven steps to make sure ethics are meaningful, eight disciplines to ensure programs achieve good results, and a communications approach to demonstrate responsibility and accountability, all interwoven with inspiring case studies from his own international experience and other organizations’ stories.

    Staff and volunteers at registered nonprofits around the world, as well as any individual or group raising funds more informally, will value this guide to empower organizations to win trust, raise more funds, and achieve greater program impact.

    Introduction: The importance of the charitable sector and its two big challenges. PART I: Meaningful ethics for trust. 1 Funding in the charitable sector – Large but underperforming. 2 Possible causes for the underperformance of funding. 3 Decrease in public trust in NGOs and the importance of speaking up. 4 How to earn trust and implement the seven imperatives for meaningful ethics to be trusted and to increase funding. 5 InterAction case study – Drafting a code of ethics in a participatory process for greater ownership. 6 Three progressive case studies – Developing stronger codes of ethics with external verification. 7 Rhode Island case study – Ensuring enforcement and sanctions for more effective codes of ethics. 8 Twelve lessons to earn trust – Clarity, assessments, sanctions, reporting, and more. 9 Worksheet for ethics and trust. 10 PART II: Strategic evaluation for impact. 11 Problems with monitoring and evaluation – Resistance and Donor Mandates. 12 From project management to capacity building to strategic evaluation. 13 Strategic evaluation – A powerful tool for learning and increasing impact. 14 How to implement the eight priority disciplines in strategic evaluation for better programs, more funding, expanded programs, and more engaged employees. 15 Eight case studies – Progressing to strategic evaluation with data, research, learning, and accountability. 16 Three case studies – Developing strategic evaluation in practice. 17 Lessons for leaders, managers, fundraisers, and grantmakers for trust and impact. 18 Worksheets for evaluation, learning, and impact. 19 About the author – Get involved! It is easy to do


    Author, strategist, and mentor Kenneth H. Phillips – called a Master of Fundraising and Organizational Development – is internationally renowned for his expertise in strategy, teamwork, and leadership for nonprofit organizations and community associations.

    "Trust is the primary currency that enables the charitable sector to exist. Ken Phillips reminds us of the need for charities to demonstrate trustworthiness. This is perhaps more critical now than ever before. We are experiencing historically low numbers of people donating to charities. If this is to change charity leaders would do well to consider the themes in this book."

    – H. Art Taylor, President & Chief Executive Officer, BBB Wise Giving Alliance

    "Based on decades of practical, hands-on success with international charities, Ken Phillips sets forth in this book detailed prescriptions for nonprofit organizations to build greater trust from donors, increased impact for beneficiaries, expanded achievement of mission, and achieve more fundraising success."

    – Renowned fundraising consultant Roger M. Craver, Editor, The Agitator, U.S.A.

    "Trust in people, purpose, and performance is fundamental to establish and maintain relationships between donors and NGOs, and is therefore a primary currency for all nonprofits. Ken’s book, enlivened with personal stories and case studies, will help you build trust and enhance your impact." 

    – James Magowan, Coordinating Director, European Community Foundation Initiative, E.U.

    "Today trust and impact are the corner stones of fundraising and without them the whole fundraising house will tumble. Indeed, I cannot recommend this book too highly as it deals explicitly and brilliantly with both these key issues."

    – John Baguley, Owner, International Fundraising Consultancy (IFC), U.K.

    "The importance of trust, impact, learning, and accountability of NGOs cannot be overstated. In this edition of his civil society series, Ken Phillips shares knowledge, reflection, and tools from his half-century of professional experience, underlining the role of values, ethics, learning, and the vital role of evaluation for continuous improvement and impact to enhance organizations’ achievements and increase donor support. He shares case studies and practical experience from his decades-long career, reminding how accountability through leadership, transparency, and communication are core in these efforts. A readable resource for practitioners at all levels of organizations." 

    – Abby Maxman, President and CEO, Oxfam America

    "I’m impressed with the topics Ken Phillips is addressing. Certainly, there is need to improve the performance and impact of NGOs, both the smaller ones and the big ones."

    – Jim Rugh, Founder of RealWorld Evaluation, former Head of Design, Monitoring, and Evaluation for Accountability and Learning for CARE International, U.S.A.

    "Ken, you are an unwavering advocate of ethics in every organization – including government. I am grateful for your leadership in the Rhode Island Constitutional Convention Ethics Committee. As revealed here, your vision shaped what became the most powerful Ethics Commission in the country."

    – Phil West, former Executive Director, Common Cause Rhode Island

    "It is essential that NGOs have the capabilities and operational policies to document and communicate that they work in an ethical manner and deliver the results they promise. Ken Phillips take the mystery out of these complex expectations for NGOs and provides a step-by-step guide to increase organizational success with increased funding and a more effective organization."

    – Rebecca Morley, Principal, Rebecca Morley Consulting, former director, Health Impact Project, Pew Charitable Trusts, and former executive director, National Center for Healthy Housing